Some Ontario special-ed teachers must teach students online and in person

Claudine Santos, president of the Ontario Parents of Visually Impaired Children, and her son Willam outside a school in Ottawa, on Sept. 19 2020.

Kamara Morozuk / Globe and Mail/The Globe and Mail

Special-education teachers at several Ontario boards are learning that they are expected to teach in-class and online at the same time despite the unique challenges faced by their elementary-age students with autism and other learning disabilities.

Many boards have different teachers who provide instruction to students learning online and to those in the classroom. But a handful of boards, including the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board and Peel District School Board, are requiring teachers in self-contained classrooms to also teach those children whose families have opted for online learning.

Self-contained classrooms are typically small with around 10 students with severe learning disabilities, developmental disabilities or speech and language disorders. There are multiple adults in the room, including a

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